Jonathan Martin has already taken his leave from the Dolphins because of some apparent locker room issues, and it seems the problem goes deeper than just the 2012 first-round pick.
Martin left the team earlier this week for personal reasons, which have since been reported as potential locker room quarrels with veterans, most notably offensive guard Richie Incognito — although, Incognito denies it. Other players apparently have qualms with their treatment by some veterans as well, according to Adam Beasley of the Miami Herald.
Some Dolphins players are essentially being held hostage by veterans, who have been using the younger guys as “ATMs” to benefit their lavish Miami lifestyles. Beasley reported that one player has even “gone broke” because of the veterans constantly taking advantage of him.
One such instance was when the rookies were stuck with a $30,000 bill during a recent team dinner. Veteran defensive end Jared Odrick tweeted about the incident, showing off a picture of the team at dinner and even following it up by noting how expensive the bill was.
Everything tastes better when rookies pay for it http://t.co/KGaisEfap2—
Jared Odrick (@JaredOdrick98) November 02, 2013
“Yes that bill would make you sick,” Odrick tweeted out later. He’s since deleted the Tweet from his account.
Rookie safety Will Davis, who makes $405,000 this season, confirmed the report soon thereafter with a tweet of his own.
I just seen a dinner bill for $30,000... WOW #RookieNight—
Will Davis (@WillieD_effect) November 02, 2013
It’s not uncommon for veterans to have a bit of fun at the rookies’ expense. Many teams will have rookies pick up the bill on a big meal or a similar outing, but while $30,000 might be chump change to vested veterans, it’s a lot of money for rookies who likely are only making somewhere in the $400,000 to $1 million range.
If the supposed “bullying” inside the Dolphins’ locker room is directly related to money, things could get even more complicated for Miami this season. They’re already at a disadvantage without Martin, who is the team’s starting right tackle, on the field, and could eventually be subject to some off-field investigations by the NFL or NFLPA on the issue.